Police hare coursing crackdown sentencing begins

Polic ein Lincolnshire are delighted after their ongoing hare coursing crackdown began to result in sentences being passed down.

In early December two men from Lancashire were given fines and restraining orders by Skegness Magistrates Court.

Stephen Taylor, 50, from Rochdale, and Kieran Giddings, 55, from Rossendale, were each handed restraining orders banning them from entering any land in Lincolnshire with a dog or dogs until 6th December 2015.

The effect of this three year ban from the county’s land is that any breach will leave them liable to up to five years in prison.

These are just the start of what police promise are many prosecutions being brought by their Operation Galileo team.

At this point, around midway through the Hare Coursing “season”, around 80 people are being prosecuted. The team said it hopes that the impact of restraining orders such as these will be significant, both for the landowners and public of Lincolnshire, as well as potentially for convicted offenders.

Inspector Andy Ham said: “We’d been told that some potential offenders were already staying away, but that other more dedicated hare coursers will continue to come.

“Well the police aren’t going to go away either, and if you do offend here, particularly in contravention of a restraining order, there are going to be some real consequences for you.”